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2 things to do when planning to make charitable will bequests

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2023 | Estate Planning |

In recent years, more Americans are playing an active role in philanthropy by supporting charitable organizations throughout their lives. Many are also interested in continuing their support once they leave this world.

You can make charitable donations in your will to ensure organizations you care about have the means to continue helping others. Here are two essential tasks to complete that could prevent problems with your will.

1. Speak with the charity about your gift

Surprising a charity or organization with a donation in your will seems like a nice gesture, but it is usually better to inform them about your plans. One compelling reason to do so is to discuss how you hope the organization will use your gift.

Giving advance notice also ensures you have proper information about the charity, such as its legal name. Incorrect details may make it hard for the organization to collect your donation.

2. Speak with your family members

The contents of your will are no one’s business but your own. However, failing to tell your family about your plans to include charities in your will could lead to misunderstandings. Informing them about your charitable gifts can help to prevent shock and potential hard feelings.

Another reason to let them know is to prevent family-initiated will contests. If they fear someone coerced you into donating or you did not understand your actions, they may dispute your donation out of concern.

Each state has distinct laws and rules for creating a valid will. Learning more about California wills and estate laws can ensure your final wishes proceed per your intent. An estate planning representative can explain these laws and help you find other ways to strengthen your final will or your trusts.